I’ve always loved encouraging others, especially writers. I love to teach what I know in order to help people get a little further along a path I’ve walked. And I love asking other people about what they do and how they do it – especially writers!
So when I decided to finally make time to create a podcast, something I’ve wanted to do for a few years, I didn’t want to focus on only one of the areas above. In December, 2017, WRITE NOW! Workshop Podcast (named after my classes of the same name) launched with three episodes a week.
On Sundays, I produce a short Encouraging Words episode whose aim is to help writers feel like they’re not alone, and give them some of my trademark sunny encouragement. 😀
Every Tuesday, I teach some writing tip or trick or talk about a writing device that the listener can put into practice right away in their writing.
And each Thursday, I interview someone in the writing industry (or tangentially related) about what they’re doing. I try to make sure there is always some take-away value for the listeners, but I also try to be sure the interview is interesting and fun!
If you want to start listening from the beginning, or jump in at any episode you choose, you can search for WRITE NOW! Workshop Podcast on your favorite podcast app. (There’s probably one on your smart phone.) Either listen to just an episode or two, or hit the Subscribe button so that new episodes automatically download. You can also listen on my website, and most of the episodes are also on video that you can watch on YouTube here.
Episode 000 is a short introduction that tells you what to expect, then all the rest of the episodes have either a “T” or an “I” or an “E” after the number. T means it’s a teaching episode, I is for the Interviews, and E designates the Encouraging Words episodes. See how it forms T-I-E, TIE? I want to help you tie all the parts of your writing life together. Learn what you can do to improve your writing, learn from what others are doing, and get lifted up with some encouragement to keep going! 😀
This month’s interview guests include Bonnie DePue, an occupational therapist suggesting some good stretches and exercises for writers (and others who sit and type all day); Lee Batchler and Janet Scott Batchler, screenwriters sharing tips on screenwriting, story, and collaboration (airs tomorrow, May 10, 2018); Laura Drake, a women’s fiction author who will share her tips on how to make The First Five Pages sing (airs May 17); and Chris Fox, author of the new book, Plot Gardening (airs May 24).
Past guests include Jacqueline Diamond, Lauraine Snelling, James Scott Bell, Debra Holland, Lisa Cron, and so many more! I hope you find some interesting, helpful, and encouraging tips that help you take your writing life to the next level! 😀
This month I made my debut at Lady Jane’s Salon OC, reading from my historical romance, Rogue’s Hostage. I attended for the first time last month and enjoyed it so much, I agreed to read in October. I’m just glad the microphone was working Monday night.
Alina K. Field started us off with an excerpt from her latest Regency romance, Bella’s Band, which featured a visit to a brother by an innocent, gently bred young lady. Fortunately, the hero is there to rescue her from the unwanted attentions of a very drunk customer.
Debra Holland read a sweetly emotional first kiss scene from her upcoming Western romance, Glorious Montana Sky. Stealing a kiss is a daring move for an upright widowed minister.
And Sylvie Fox entertained us with a risque excerpt from her new release, Don’t Judge Me, about a young woman who designs porn websites who meets a sexy comedian who does a mean strip tease. Are you interested yet?
I went last with a dramatic scene from the first chapter of my historical romance, Rogue’s Hostage, set during the French & Indian War, and inspired by the Daniel Day Lewis movie version of The Last of the Mohicans.
Lady Jane’s Salon started in New York City where the first salon was founded in February 2009 by romance authors Hope Tarr, Leanna Renee Hieber, Maya Rodale, and book blogger, Ron Hogan. There are now eight satellite salons: Denver, CO; Raleigh-Durham, NC; Naperville, IL (Chicago area), Grenville, SC, Phoenix, AZ, Silver Spring, MD, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA and Orange County, CA. Every Lady Janeâ€™s SalonÂ® charges an admission fee of $5 OR one gently used romance novel, which is donated to a local charity..
A big thanks is owed to Beth Yarnell for founding our local salon, and also to Sylvie Fox who produces the monthly podcasts. You can listen to the podcasts at the website or by downloading them at iTunes. I’ve downloaded the past podcasts and am enjoying listening to them.
Lady Jane’s OC meets the second Monday of every month from 7-9PM at the
Gypsy Den Alt Cafe, 211 W Center Street Promenade, Anaheim, CA 92805.
Phone: (714) 956-4400
The atmosphere is eclectic and the food is delicious. I tried the bread pudding this month. Yum.
Next month’s meeting, Nov. 10, features Elizabeth Boyle, Deborah Mullins, Beth Yarnell and Felice Fox. Come join us. I can guarantee it will be a fun evening. And if you’re thinking of signing up to read, don’t be afraid. The crowd is friendly and supportive.
I’ve been busy at my blog with my Paranormal Blogfest. Check it out to read the posts and enter the Rafflecopter for a Halloween gift basket. Our own Kitty Bucholtz will be there tomorrow talking about her love for superheroes, and Susan Squires joins me on Oct. 29 for a post about her new release, Night Magic.
This has been a year of challenges for me, since I started seriously indie publishing. I’ve learned it’s a lot harder to do everything myself, even though it has been rewarding. The one thing that has got me through it is the support and camaraderie from the romance community, including OCC.
Two of the challenges and rewards have involved group projects. Being part of the Romance Super Bundle brought me together with a group of wonderful indie authors: Amy Gamet, Dale Mayer, Donna Marie Rogers, Edie Ramer, Kate Kelly, Pamela Fryer, Lois Winston, Barbara Phinney and Wendy Ely. I’ve learned a lot about marketing and promotion from these ladies, including my first ever Facebook Launch Party.
Monday, Nov. 18, is the Facebook launch party for the other project. I was honored when Debra Holland invited me to be part of her second holiday anthology: Sweetwater Springs Christmas: A Montana Sky Short Story Anthology (Montana Sky Series) by Debra Holland and Friends, namely E. Ayers, Linda Carroll-Bradd, MJ Fredrick, Paty Jager, Jill Marie Landis, Trish Milburn, Linda McLaughlin, Bev Pettersen, Tori Scott, and Cynthia Woolf.
Writing my story, The Best Present, was both challenging and rewarding. It’s not easy to write in another author’s story world, plus I was unfamiliar with Montana in 1895 (or any other time.) Some research was required. (That was okay since I love research.)
For once, I shed my romance persona and wrote about a ten-year-old girl having the worst Christmas of her young life. I drew on some personal experiences, including my memories of my tenth Christmas, which took place two weeks after the death of my grandmother. Allison’s story has a different ending than mine did, but it’s the most personal work I’ve ever written, and it was an emotional experience. I was reminded of the old saw about opening a vein.
Sweetwater Springs Christmas: A Montana Sky Short Story Anthology releases Nov. 18 on Amazon but is available for pre-order now.
I hope some of you will join us on Monday to celebrate the release of the anthology at Facebook. It runs from 9AM to 6PM, Pacific time, and I will be there alone (gulp) from 10-11AM.
Happy Thanksgiving and happy writing!
Have you ever wandered down a dark street late at night, your high heels clicking loudly on the cobblestones, when you hear a second pair of footsteps behind you?
Is someone following you?
Heart thudding in your chest, you stop.
Your pulse racesâ€¦the hair on the back of your neck stands up.
Heâ€™s right behind you.
What do you do?
Run or fight?
If you havenâ€™t experienced this scenario, I bet your heroine has.
“From my experience in the field, I know each fight is different and this enemy has his own agenda. Rape? Robbery? Could be, but I doubt it. They don’t operate this way when they want a woman. They act friendly, use pretty talk to pick up a girl, then knock her off her feet before she knows what’s happening to her.
I pull back, walk toward the rue de la Huchette, one step at a time, like all this is happening in slo-mo. As if the whole scene is a video game and someone else is at the controls, pressing the attack buttons and toggling my polygonal form to do what they want and I have no choice. Enemy contact. Kill’em. Kill’em. These words zap through my brain like a subliminal message from command center.
Keep going back. Left foot, right. My eyes scope out the environment. Stone buildings, windows shuttered. No escape. No one to hear the ruckus, the screams. The punks know that. They talk, egging each other on to see who’ll make the first move. Closer, closer they come, like maggots ready to feast on a warm corpse.
Not mine, you punks.”
I wrote from my first-hand experience when I constructed that scene. A similar incident had happened to me on that same street in Paris and I was lucky enough to get away. But I never forgot that fear pulsating through my veins. The icy chill that goes through you when you make that split decision that can determine whether or not youâ€™re going to survive. Pulling up the emotions I felt that night helped me write the emotions of my heroine.
This scene went through my mind when I attended Dr. Debra Hollandâ€™s Workshop: Creating Fighting or Self-Defense Scenes at the RWA Anaheim 2012 Conference. Dr. Debra presented an outstanding workshop showing how to protect yourself as a woman and also how to put your heroine through her paces. She gave members from the audience the opportunity to experience what it feels like firsthand to be attacked by a stranger.
Hereâ€™s a video I put together from the workshop:
Dr. Debra Holland — www.drdebraholland.com — teaches a karate class at the American Martial Arts Academy located at1027 N. Harbor Blvd, Fullerton, CA 714 871-3898.
Check out their website for more information: www.KarateOC.com
AMAA has been teaching Womenâ€™s Self-Defense Classes for more than thirty years.
The gentlemen from the Academy who assisted Dr. Debra are: Steve Hopple and Adam Rigsby.
A special thank you to fellow OCC/RWA member Rob Preece for his assistance in presenting the workshop.
And thank you to Sarah Andre — www.sarahandre.com — who volunteered to experience her heroineâ€™s fight scene up close and personal.
I highly recommend Dr. Debra Hollandâ€™s workshop.
Thank you, Dr. Debra!
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